May 4, 2015
Pennsylvania growers: Install pheromone dispensers this week

From the insect perspective, the weather pattern of the 2015 season looks very similar to weather observed during the 2014 season. The 2015 season biofix for the Oriental fruit moth (OMF) was established on April 26; spotted tentiform leafminer on April 12. With much warmer weather in the forecast the biofixes for codling moth and tufted apple bud moth are expected near the end of the week (May 9th).

Brown marmorated stink bug, plum curculio and Oriental fruit moth

Brown marmorated stink bug adults are slowly emerging from their overwintering shelters. The petal fall insecticide application in peaches directed against plum curculio and Oriental fruit moth should also provide excellent control of BMSB. In the majority of apple orchards no stink bug control activities are required at this time. Visual monitoring for feeding adults is the most reliable BMSB monitoring practice at this time of the season.

The 5 percent egg hatch of Oriental fruit moth (and the optimal timing to start controlling OFM) is expected around May 7th in the Biglerville, Pennsylvania. For most South-central Pennsylvania locations this timing should also closely align with the petal fall insecticide application on peaches; therefore control of plum curculio, stink bugs and tarnished plant bug should also be considered when choosing the most effective OFM product. No insecticide should be applied until complete petal fall is observed in orchards.

Scale insects

If not controlled before bloom, scale insects can be controlled with a post-bloom application of Esteem or Centaur with an addition of a low rate of oil or application of Movento. Excellent coverage is necessary for effective control of scale insects. Growers should use a minimum of 100 gallons per acre or more depending on the size of their trees.

Mating disruption

If hand applied mating disruption materials (Isomate, CheckMate or Cidetrak products) are planned for the control of codling moth, OFM, dogwood borer, peach tree borer or lesser peach tree borer, now is the best time to place dispensers in orchards.

Pheromone traps

All pheromone traps for monitoring fruit pests except traps for obliquebanded leafroller (OBLR) and peach tree borer (PTB) should already be placed in orchards. The OBLR and PTB traps should be added within two weeks after the bloom of apples.

Grzegorz Krawczyk, Extension Tree Fruit Entomologist, Penn State

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